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Morning Joe

News/Business. Interviews with newsmakers and politicians; host Joe Scarborough. New.

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Us 38, Syria 20, Angie 16, America 14, Washington 13, Joe 11, Ashley Judd 9, United States 9, Rwanda 9, Sanford 9, Harry Reid 8, U.s. 8, Iraq 8, Haley Barbour 6, California 6, Dianne Feinstein 6, Florida 6, South Carolina 6, Nra 5, David Steinberg 5,
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  MSNBC    Morning Joe    News/Business. Interviews with newsmakers  
   and politicians; host Joe Scarborough. New.  

    March 20, 2013
    3:00 - 6:00am PDT  

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why are you awake? we have an answer. >> we have answer. >> lori writes i'm not sure how low a reality show can go but secret versions is pushing it down. >> i haven't seen secret versions. any excuse to show luis again. one more time. he didn't try a single rotation. he just did the deadman's plunge. thanks very much, john. now time for "morning joe." ♪ live pictures of the airport in tel aviv. president obama will be landing in 20 minutes and we will follow the story throughout the morning on "morning joe." welcome to "morning joe." good morning. it's wednesday, march 20th.
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with us on the set is we have msnbc political analyst and former chairman of the republican national committee michael steele and msnbc political analyst richard wolf and former adviser to the bush administration and author of "start up nation," dan senor. in washington former representative of california and ceo of the woodrow international senator for scholars, jane harman. good to have you both and all of us together this morning. right to the news. we had the two-year-old conflict in syria is entering a critical stage. both the rsyrian state news agency reports 25 people were killed yesterday.
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american officials say they are looking into the allegations and white house press secretary jay carney issued a warning to the assad regime. >> we have no evidence to substantiate the charge that the opposition has used chemical weapons. we are deeply skeptical of a regime has lost all credibility and warn the regime against making these kind of charges as any kind of pretext or cover for its use of chemical weapons. >> neither side of the conflict has provided documentation that chemical agents have been used. senator lindsey graham spoke about the allegations telling foreign policy that quote this. we need to come up with a plan to secure these weapons sites either in conjunction with our partners or, if nothing else, by ourselves. if the choice is to send in troops to secure the weapons sites versus allowing chemical weapons to get in the hands of some of the most violent people in the world, i vote to cut this off before it becomes a problem.
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but following intelligence briefings, the chairs of both the house and senate intelligence committee said they believe president bashar al assad has crossed the so-called red line in the civil war. >> i think the days are becoming mow desperate. the regime is more desperate. we know where the chemical weapons are. there's no secret that they are there. i think the probabilities are very high that we are going into some very dark times and i think the white house needs to be prepared. >> i have a high probability to believe that chemical weapons were used. we need that final verification but given everything we know over the last year and a half, i would come to the conclusion that they are either positioned for use and ready to do that, or, in fact, have been used. both of those scenarios, i think, we need to step up in the
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world community to prevent a humanitarian disaster that we haven't seen seen since 25 years ago in iraq. >> the world health organization is sending medical supplies to syria would not verify if patient were seeking treatment for chemical weapons. at least 70,000 syrians have been killed since two years ago. nearly 800,000 people have fled to jordan and lebanon. >> jane harman, the situation keeps getting worse by the day. we just had a clip by the democratic intel chair person of the senate. the republican chairman of the house intel committee talking about this red line being crossed. i remember having debate a couple of months ago about 20,000 syriaians being killed. we are up to 70,000 right now. how much longer does this go on before the united states and the allies, through the united
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nations, get involved and take this tyrant out of power? >> well, right. i was there, joe, ten years ago when i believe bad wmd intelligence on iraq so i'm reluctant to say something i don't know and i don't know on the chemical stockpiles whether they are ready for use or have been used and i don't think we absolutely know. i just did hear the clip of mike rogers, but i do agree we have reached a tipping point and that we have to play a more forceful role. $60 million of hue man tear relief is not enough. the allies are ready to help arm the opposition. the opposition has named a leadership team, which is important the lead is american syrian who at least sounds competent. i have no idea. but having just been in israel and in europe, i think that we ought to consider, as part of a group, moving against the arias
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sets in syria. >> certainly be good to act as a group, which is something the president has done before. dan, these decisions are so difficult because i think a to jump too far into the gating at hand, a tipping point. >> to be clear, there are actions that can be taken short of u.s. direct interventions. applying the armed and defense capabilities. emerging bipartisan coalition in congress pushing for that. basically coming out for it a couple of days in the senate, senators marco rubio and bob casey, casey, democrat of pennsylvania have provided more legislation to provide more support for the syrians. so i think the combination of the human catastrophe.
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then you add this development. i think it gets to a point where the question is, yes, engaging in some way and providing e resources on the ground are risky but riskier than where this is heading? >> how long do we wait? obviously, this is a country exhausted by ten years of war going into iraq for all of the wrong reasons a decade ago. our policy leaders remembering that but are we like generals fighting the last war who have the human catastrophe in front of us? 70,000 killed. so many displaced. how long do we -- >> we don't mind sitting out of humanitari humanitari humanitarian castastrophes. since 1998 most thing millions of people have been killed. we are looking at this for digit reasons so let's not fool
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ourselves about the humanitarian aspect of it. >> help me out here. i've asked this question of dr. bres brzezinski. i remember the million of people killed in rwanda and two million killed in sudan. we sat by and did nothing. then humanitarian crisis in. fewer people were killed in either of those conflicts in rwanda and -- >> if you're saying this is a strategic question, syria is important because of the strategic play in this region. what the white house is doing isn't immoral. which is to say syria is important because of israel and iran but at the same time, trying to deal with iran
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directly and one of the other lessons from iraq if you think there is a threat in the region among muslims, among arabs, you should go after that threat. go after something peripheral. the strategic question for this administration has always been is syria so well armed that nothing short of full-blown war? you can have some air strikes but to take down syrian air defense is a full-blown war. >> jane? >> john mccain tells a compelling story of being -- recently being in a syrian refugee camp in jordan and walking through that camp with the director and having her say to him, look at all of these kids. they are the future jihadis. i think we have a strategic interest way beyond the short-term issues which are huge about destabilizing jordan and
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giving us maybe an advantage in iran if the syrian government changes and the fallout with israel. i think the long-term issue is do we have values that want to prevent this kind of thing? after all, europe finally did it and we were with them in bosnia. we didn't do it in rwanda. we did act in libya which has less strategic interest for us than this. i think there is no choice any more. i was very cautious for a long time and applauded obama for being cautious, but now we have reached the tipping point. >> we will come back to this. we have a lot of other news to cover as well. first leg of mark sanford's shot at political redemption is complete. he easily clenched a spot in the runoff for the charleston area congressional seat. what is still unclear who his opponent will be. following thin voter turnout,
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bostic and grooms separated less than 1%. now sanford will try to cobble together support for those who voted for other candidates in what was a packed field flanked by his sons, sanford invoked the importance of putting the country's financial house in order. >> at the end of the day, what we are all fighting for as fellow south carolinians and doing something on the tipping point that our civilization now finds itself. wherein, we have 40 cents of every dollar barred to sustain government. where we have a fed that buys 75% of what the treasury spends every year. where we have a congressional budget office that says in just 12 years, we will only have enough to pay for interest and entitlement and nothing else. >> the winner will meet democrat elizabeth colbert busch the
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sister of stephen colbert in may. >> she is a different side of the family. like missouri and missouri. half of them pronounce it one way and half of them pronounce it the other way. >> an interesting race for sure. >> you listened to mark sanford talk and the way the guy has always talked. just like that. i remember after his crisis happened, we were down in south carolina and i invited him to lunch and we sat and talked. he said, he was talking about how stupid he was and how sorry he was and we talked about the personal side of everything. and then i asked him about politics. i said do you think you'll ever get in sf he is like, i don't know. this was a couple of years ago. he goes, all i know, i'm such an idiot. he said this is our time, talking about me and him. these are the things we have talked about for 20 years, joe, nonstop. he said i can't believe -- i
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shot myself in the foot this way and was this stupid. well, he is back and he is talking about these issues that everybody else is talking about right now. >> it's a beautiful thing. >> and if he continues and wins this, he is going to actually be a very strong voice in washington. >> i think he will be a strong voice. the interesting thing, as you know, about american politics is that the voters are very forgiving. at the end of the day, people of south carolina and his district are going to look at him and measure him against his past for sure, but also in the context of this time and the issues that are going to be important to discuss. and he has taken the appropriate amount of time away from it all to heal himself, to heal his family and to move on, and i think the voters appreciate that. they were clear about the numbers he got in that field. it was a kroued field and he could have easily gotten swamped had the voters felt differently. i think the issues the way he speaks about them that
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crystallizes the momted moment for him. >> he has a runoff to get through but i think in the runoff they will probably have an ugly recount and all the much better for mark sanford. san senor, we are looking at pictures on the screen of president landing in tel aviv. this is a white house that has had a sometime rocky relationship with the israelis two years ago. a poll had only 3% of israelis trusting president obama and the numbers have gone up much more now. talk about the significance of this meeting. >> it's very significant. i think -- look. israelis, by and large, pro israelis and misgivings about this president or that president. the spirit of the u.s. as a relationship is strong, it's as strong as ever and i think you'll see that reflected in the reception the president gives and speech he is giving tomorrow. he is speaking to thousands of students and i think that will
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be very powerful. >> what is the backdrop of this? why now? >> a very good question. many people believe this is the trip the president should have done at the time of this cairo trip the first year in office. that is to say in his first term he made a strategic decision that so much of the stall in the israeli/palestinian process was that the u.s. government had been so close to israeli government. israeli presidents had been so close to israeli prime ministers and to borrow the president's word we need daylight between the israel and u.s. in order to build trust and trust from the palestinians and arabs. he went to cairo and saudi arabia and he purposely skipped over the 40 or 50-minute flight to israel. >> to be seen as an honest broker. being just so one-sided towards israel and gave the famous speech in cairo. let me ask you, though, before we go on to another story and we will be talking about this certainly a good deal. is this more about reigniting the middle east peace or sending
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a message to iran right now? i think it's the latter. he is coming to israel without a plan. i think is striking about this trip. most american presidents who have shown up in israel. clinton four times and bush in 2008. they went at a moment they were on the cusp -- and the president is coming to close a deal. >> this is about iran? >> there is no deal. >> i think he is sending a message to iran and israelis. i think he is trying to speak over the heads of israelis leaders and say to the israeli people give me time. i'm working on iran. give me time. i have your back, israel. >> is this about become? >> no, do that in the next block. >> this time it's personal. >> on the nation's debate on gun reform. president obama's initiative to reduce violence in america has been severely weakened. harry reid has announced the most controversial and ambitious part of the president's proposal
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a ban on assault weapons will not make the final cut when he brings the bill up for debate. >> but, right now, her amendment using the most optimistic numbers has less than 40 votes. that's not 60. i have to get something on the floor so we can have votes on that issue and the other issues i talked about and what i'm going to try to do. i'm not going to try to put something on the floor that won't succeed. i want something that will succeed. >> senator dianne feinstein who sponsored the ban was clearly irritated. the california democrat told reporters, obviously, i'm disappointed. i tried my best but my best i guess was not good enough. you'd think congress would listen but they clearly listened to the national rifle association and they do. the ban would have outlawed it nearly 160 semiautomatic weapons and limited the size of magazines to ten rounds. and in today's "daily news" a
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removal of the assault rifle ban saying, quote. any fool knows that ryan lanza couldn't have possibly have killed as many children as quickly as he did on this morning december 14th without an assault weapon in his hand. so how does the president and any big if not now for a ban on these weapons, when? if sandy hook elementary doesn't make every member of congress take a stand against assault weapons in this country, then what does? this moment, the moment of newtown, of sandy hook, elementary, should not be lost because if it is, maybe it is lost forever. it was officially lost in washington on tuesday, lost to fear and lost to ignorance and loss to the nra. one last time. if not a ban on assault now,
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then when? shame on them all. i was in a room of republicans, hundreds of them recently. >> wow! >> that image right there! >> wow. are you okay? are you going to be all right? >> i got hives but i'm okay. >> it's probably her accountants and bankers that count her money. >> lawyers. >> you got to get them stacked up. >> actually, no. no. they were not. they were just regular people and they were in -- >> regular old republicans. >> and i asked the question, i said do any of you need a bush master? do any of you feel impeded by any of you? i said all of the republicans, please, tell me. i said, seriously -- would you have a problem with a ban on these types of guns and all of them, unequivocally said no. i don't know who the people are in washington who feel the need to cling to their survivalist roots. >> it's all weapons. anyway, listen, though. as far as harry reid's decision
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goes, harry reid's job, after all, is passing legislation. if harry reid feels like they got a shot at universal background checks and a really tough trafficking bill, he is going to put that on the package and get it on the floor and try to get 60 votes, right? >> and say something was done. yeah, sure he is. look. we make fun. all the time. all the time. >> this would be a very significant step forward if you talked to mike bloomberg and also other gun control advocates. it not only would take care of say assault weapon background checks but the handgun deaths in chicago and -- >> right. >> the country. >> if you believe this is the start of a decade long effort to push back the gun culture, then this is okay as a start. if you think this is one shot then we're at a pathetic number in politics. >> who here believes this is a one-shot deal? i said it on this show several months ago and i'll say it
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again. you have issues that break certain ways. gay marriage, americans becoming much more progressive on gay marriage and abortion, i think they have become more conservative over the years for a lot of different reasons. on guns, our culture is changing. we have seen 50% of americans used to own guns. now it's 33%. the number is only going to go down. >> you're seeing the same trend on immigration. >> same trend on immigration becoming more progressive. >> look at all of the possible republican candidates running for president in 2016, almost every single one said something positive about immigration reform. 2012, none of them. >> i think dianne feinstein is entitle to do a vote. a lot of people agree with mika and me that this is a missed opportunity and even if there will be more votes later, after sandy hook, it seems to me the american public are a huge section of the american public
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want to vote on this and i think harry reid should have permitted the vote even if this piece lost. packaging it this way i think dumbs down the opportunity for more significant reform. i want to say on israel. obama is meeting with five leaders. perez, netanyahu, abbas, fayed and abdullah jordan. this isn't just an israel trip but something he could do would be very significant is to empower john kerry, very overwhelmingly secretary of state to work on the peace process now. i still think this is the closing window. >> all right. >> there you go. >> i think dianne feinstein will get a vote on the amendment and i want to see the number of votes. you never what is going to happen in the gun debates. i remember in '98, we republicans were back on our heels and thought we would get absolute slaughtered. boom. we carried the day and won huge and the democrats went into retreat for a decade.
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i'd be surprised, put some of these restrictions and regulations on the floor. i'd be surprised to republicans. if you want to say background checks to keep the guns in the hands of felons, put that on the record. >> harry reid's reality, i don't know why we are so shocked about this outcome. he telegraphed this a month ago this is where this is going. >> he trying to protect his 12 senate democrats in the cross-hairs. >> good luck to them. if they vote against universal background checks and if they vote against the tough trafficking bill, michael bloomberg is coming after you. democrats, democrats, you think you have problems coming from the right and the nra if you vote against sane, rational
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regulation on gun ownership? hey, guess what? duck. because michael bloomberg is coming. he has a lot more money than the nra. just the reality. live with it. >> jane harman, thank you so much for getting up early this morning. >> thank you, jane! >> rupp, former governor haley barbour joins us and tom brokaw and alex wagner. bill clinton is getting involved in the kentucky senate race and is not good news for ashley judd. >> what is he doing? i would i think he would like ashley judd. hollywood star. he loves hollywood. >> here is bill karins with the weather. >> i'm thinking what is is not to like about ashley judd? >> nothing. >> bill karins? >> yes? >> what is wrong with ashley judd? >> we should see more of her. >> it's like that old song "war." what is it good for?
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absolutely something. i think ashley judd should be taken seriously. >> have you guys seen the sewn that fell in the boston area yesterday? change topics here. a foot of snow fell outside of boston. snow will slowly be melting this week. i say slowly. because there is no big warm-up in sight. here is what we will welcome spring with. more winter. cold air pouring down from the great lakes to the northeast. yes, this is -- when you look at these windchills this morning, it's painful. philly 25 and windchills this morning in chicago land all the way back to the midwest are worse. we are looking at negative numbers. minus 16 right now in fargo. it's snowing from buffalo to erie this morning. even near cleveland and ashtabula, it's snowing. this has not been a fun march. looks like we have to wait until after easter to warm up the northern half of the country. again, at least sun will be out
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from d.c. to new york this afternoon making it feel a little bit better and slow melt in boston with sunny and 41. good news i've been watching the potential for a storm on the east coast. monday looks rain to it and the south. at least one piece of good news but no big snowstorms on the way. you're watching "morning joe," brewed by starbucks. ♪ [ female announcer ] birdhouse plans. nacho pans. glass on floors. daily chores. for the little mishaps you feel use neosporin to help you heal. it kills germs so you heal four days faster. neosporin. use with band-aid brand bandages. no they don't. hey son. have fun tonight. ♪ ♪ back against the wall ♪ ain't nothin to me ♪ ain't nothin to me [ crowd murmurs ] hey! ♪
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[ howls ] ♪
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live look air force one just landed in tel aviv. president obama making a brief very action-packed visit there and we will be following throughout the show today. time to take a look at the morning papers at 29 past of the hour. "usa today" new harvard study links death of 180,000 people worldwide to sugary drinks. th think about this 25,000 americans. the study used research on deaths attributed to diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
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the researchers make a huge leap when they take beverage intake calculations from around the globe and allege that those beverages are the causes of death which the author themselves acknowledge are due to chronic disease which is caused by drinking things like that. from our "parade" of papers. they will no longer market energy drink as a dietary supplement. >> what? >> because it's not. >> of course it is. >> beverages are more loosely regulated now. they will not have to link to death and injuries. in recent months the fda has received a handful of cases involving deaths citing monster drinks. >> but they taste really good. kentucky judge forbidden an
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80-year-old man to keep yelling bingo. he was cited for second degree disorderly conduct. t police officer said you can't run into a theater and say fire and you can't yell bingo in a bingo hall when you don't have a bingo. i guess they don't have a lot of crime in kentucky. netanyahu does this a lot or does he as we look at the picture of the president and israels leaders. >> yes, he yells bingo! >> netanyahu does? >> he does it in hebrew. >> what is bingo in hebrew? >> it's bingo. >> with hebrew letters. >> the president is making first trip to israel since, gosh. >> since bush in 2008.
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>> this is his first trip to israel. a lot of pressure on him during the campaign actually asking questions asking him why he hadn't visited. he said reported the president will take a trip to israel in his second term. here it is. first foreign trip there. israel analysts, if he is asking israel for forbearance and asking for time. israel has a red line much more immediate than the americans do. the president thinks as he said in his interview with israel channel 2 before his departure he i think, iran is a year away. he is going to israel saying behind closed doors, give me time. i want to pursue the negotiation track and i want to try to continue to get a peaceful outcome here on the iran program and talk to the israel public and build confidence among israelis. >> president reagan never went
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as president and president bush went at the end of his second term. he is on a better track in terms of israel visits than his predecessors. >> a good point richard makes. >> can i respond? >> president reagan did not actually go through the arab world. he said, while i'm here, i'm not going to israel. >> as you look at these three world leaders too. ronald reagan never made sure his time matched -- >> okay. this is just ridiculous. >> there you go. >> stungningly profind. >> let's go to politico, please. with us now -- >> also makes him superior to ronald reagan, right? >> whatever. >> the messiah has returned to israel.
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look at that. >> are you kidding me? with us now is chief white house correspondent for politico, mike allen, here with the morning playbook. >> this is a good one. >> watch the live pictures while we talk to mike. i think we can walk and chew gum at the same time according to joe. >> i doubt it. >> mike, new report from politico suggest a number of big name democrats are not thrilled with the idea of ashley judd challengi challenging senate minority leader in conduct. some party leaders including former president bill clinton is trying to court another candidate. the kentucky secretary of state. the former president encouraged her to run assuring his and hillary clinton's support should she try to unseat mcconnell. judd under fire for a speech she delivered in 2010 she compared a coal mining practice to the,
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quote, state sanctioned rape of appe ap appalatcha. >> could they see she would not be a great leader of kentucky? >> ashley judd would be a perfect candidate if she weren't living in tennessee, if she weren't against coal mining and weren't for san francisco republicans love using. two great names here. ashley judd and alison grimes. amazing names. so this is for the big enchilada. the 2014 senate races. can they take out mitchell mcconnell like the senate republicans took out tom daschle a democratic leader a few years ago. democrats are starting to get worried ashley judd is too easy and too much material to work
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with her so they want basically a blank slate. allison grimes has been the state -- >> secretary of state. >> secretary of state for just a year. joe knows the best way to have a clean record in public office is to not be there very long and someone new in office and with a powerful family in the state. her dad is a union leader. her dad has been the state party chairman. so people love the idea of her running at a state political event. bill clinton took her aside and ad a 35-minute conversation said we are reporting that both he and secretary clinton would support her if she decided to run. >> obviously, love, michael steele, to have judd run whether she is running from tennessee or or san francisco. >> doesn't matter where she woru she would would be a great
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candidate to run against. mcconnell's concern is not who the democrats are going to put up. it's how he is going to navigate a primary potentially should someone to his right get into that, or he gets some kind of noise or pressure. i'mcurious, though, mike, if the democrats are beginning to do this tinkering, how is ashley judd perceived by the base? is she getting any momentum with the base at all or the establishment dems making the noise right no >> the base would be excited. she was out big for obama and she's been doing everything that you would do to run. she still is. there is the possibility that these two would wind up in a primary. although that is unlikely. allison grimes is such a promising political figure that people are courting her for house, senate, and governor. the house democratic campaign committee wants her to run. it's possible that she could run for governor later. so that's why she has a huge
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gamble to make here and why probably going up against ashley judd in a primary is unlikely. the democrats who make the argument for judd say that it would be -- that allison grimes would be too traditional, that they need something exciting to take on -- >> mike, let's move quickly. your lead story. only reason 'em asking this, i saw breaking news from politico across my iphone last night. menendez court -- a picture of president with this menendez do donor. i don't know his name. what is the impact? >> here is what is important here. senator robert menendez who is chairman of the foreign affairs committee who is being investigated by senate ethics and part of an investigation in florida pulls back the curtain a
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little bit on someone whose plane he has flown on and house he has stayed at, who has given him along with his enterprise the years. so senator menendez has a tough thing here. someone who has been very involved in the democratic politics and supportive of him and now in the cross-hairs of the fbi. tough for senator menendez to pull away from that and why there is a big story for some time. >> mike allen, thank you very much. up next, we are covering a diving competition. >> what? >> it's great. >> what are you talking about? >> cream abdul-jabbar. >> what? >> a new reality show has celebrities taking the plunge. it's next in sports. >> have you seen this? is it really good? i cannot believe this is good. ♪ this day calls you. to fight chronic osteoarthritis pain. to fight chronic low back pain. to take action. to take the next step.
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all right. live pictures from tel aviv. president obama is greeting those who are waiting for him at the airport at a ceremony there that has been taking place. from that, we go to cnbc with sports. the weirdest transition but not so much. >> not really. everybody in line is asking the president, who do you have coming out of the east? what do you have coming out of the east, mr. president?
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>> he is this huge basketball fan. >> my old friend andy katz got there in the first year of presidency he did his final four picks. he likes to do it. his final four, you'd be happy to know, florida is in his final four. >> go gators. >> he has got florida, ohio state, indiana, and louisville. now they are going to release the entire list. i guess they want to slow roll it out for this thing. it's not that risky of a move. two number ones. >> florida is number three. >> billy donovan has been there before so i don't think that risky of a pick. ohio state is not bad either. i picked louisville. you go chalk? >> i'm going with the gators, baby. go gators. >> do you think they will win the whole thing? >> we will have a replay of the gators against ohio state in atlanta again just like it was six, seven years ago and the gators are going to win again. >> i was looking for good programming last night before i went to bed. >> you did see the diving thing on abc, right? >> the truth is, i didn't know
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they were going to do. i watched five minutes of it. >> that's sad. did you really? hold on a second. it's all shtick with us. we watched it. >> i did watch five minutes. >> that is sad and ruins it for all of us. >> he is so honest. >> you actually watched this thing? >> i did. >> why? >> because there was nothing on tv. >> the train wreck channel was off the air that night? >> what about hone by boo boo? >> this is what they do. a contest of these quasi. there is allow kareem abdul-jab >> what is he doing? give me a break.
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kareem and louie had the same score. that's a dive. >> how civilization came in. that is the end. >> they began. you can go back and check your histories. >> what is the point of the show? >> they dive. >> one year later, boom. >> i'm glad you brought that to us. >> we will be right back. >> it beats real sports. max and penny kept our bookstore
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welcome back to "morning joe." 49 past the hour. >> is that one of sting's favorite songs? when it came out, i really wasn't sure, man. but this is great sting song. >> in "the washington post" standing with ram nervously. for the moment i'm standing with rand on one leg only. his isolationist foreign policy and clan to eliminate federal deficits in five years makes it imprudent to jump in with both feet. consider on tuesday paul endorsed a version of immigration reform that would allow the 11 million or so undocumented immigrants in this country to become legal. the week before he defied the hawks in his party to lead a 13-hour filibuster in protest of
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the obama admission's secretory over its drone war fare program. >> dan senor, you've been involved in republican presidential primaries lately. sorry about that. how would those issues stack up in new hampshire and iowa and south carolina and florida? >> i think the politics, his politics on pure fiscal issues will have tremendous resonance as his father experienced in some primary states and caucus states. i think what is untested is -- from a -- from a political standpoint is his position on foreign policy. his father never really broke through on the neoisolationist politics at the grassroots level beyond a narrow segment of the electorate. rand who i've spent time talking about these issues is much salvier than his father.
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>> his father blamed in effect u.s. foreign policy for 9/11. i haven't really dug in deep to the cross tabs but i'm guessing that probably doesn't help in western iowa. rand is salvier than that, right? >> sure. talking about the president being in israel. so rand's father was extremely tough on israel which did not play well with, for instance, evangelical christians who vote to disproportionately high numbers in the republican primaries. rand lays out a view of the middle east and israel. he says i'm against foreign aid to israel and say i'm against international assistance to israel but i'll stand with israel. i'm pro israel and recognize it's a isolated region in this country. again, when you really drill down and i think rand is smart and savvy. i think where he is heading on foreign policy, he is just on the cusp here of either being very clever about it or starting to wig people out. i think that this -- the night
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of the filibuster and drones seemed like it was a good political move. over time, weeks will people be saying what was he fighting for? >> all right. dan senor and richard wolfe, thank you very much. >> thank you very much. on the way out, we have a diving board with a very big ground pool. >> don't talk big gulp around here. very hard getting through the show. 16 ounces some very hard. >> wow. coming up, he was also named successor, almost named a successor to johnny carson on "the tonight show." >> jeff greenfield will also join us, along with david steinberg. much more "morning joe" when we come back.
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coming up next, tom brokaw and jeff greenfield and alex wagner on here. we will be right back with much more "morning joe." ♪ [ kitt ] you know what's impressive?
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♪ you're looking at live pictures of president obama speaking at the airport in tel aviv where he just arrived the past hour. the past few minutes, he talked about this moment in history and how there is the historic opportunity to reaffirm unbreakable bonds between israel and america, to support israel and to support the israeli people. let's listen in for a few moments to the president. >> when people are suffering
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from africa and asia we stand together because peace must come to the holy land. for even as we are clear-eyed about the difficulties, we will never lose sight of the vision of an israel at peace with its neighbors. so as i begin this visit, let me say as clearly as i can, the united states of america stands with the state of israel because it is in our fundamental national security interests to stand with israel. it makes us both stronger. it makes us both more prosperous, and it makes the world a better place. that's why -- that's why the united states was the very first nation to recognize the state of israel 65 years ago. that's why the star of david and the star and stripes fly together today and that is why
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i'm confident in declaring that our alliance is a term, it is forever, eternal. thank you very much. >> joining us on the set tom brokaw. the host and also alex wagner j us, along with jeff greenfield. before we it turn to syria. >> tom brokaw, as dan senor was saying before, presidents don't go to israel unless they have a plan in hand regarding the middle east peace. in this case, you start to get the impression is the president is going over there to send a message, not so much to the palestinians, but the israelis. >> as i was listening to that, that phrase came back to my mind, show me the money.
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>> yeah. >> what are we going to do if it we are interested in peace? what is the big plan that we have in mind? what is the timetable that he is prepared to share? i've gone back on a number of occasions and looked at the earliest days of huntley and brinkley. as long as i've been in this business, 50 years. i've been on that tarmac a number of occasions and spent a lot of time in that number of world and there is never more chaos than at the moment. what is going on in syria is in danger of spreading across the middle east. richard engel who is over there now says we have a new kind of war fare between the shiite and the sunni from lebanon across the gulf. times are extraordinarily
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chaotic. we know tensions against maybe netanyahu and the president of the united states. nobody should have any illusions how this is going to advance, the common interests of israel and the united states. >> your father, mika, the architect of the one great breakthrough in 1979. two years later the man he helped strike the deal with was dead. it is one step forward, two steps back. >> i guess the question always is, jeff and alex, you know, how much of a lead this country should take. there are those who know a lot about this who say we should lead the way in the path to peace. >> i hate to sound a skeptical note but just to underline what tom said, several years ago i went back and tried to count the number of piece plans, you know? even before huntley/brinkley back from john cameron swayze days as the anchor of nbc news.
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there is the other neutralists. outside of a couple of breakthroughs, sadat and decision to sign a peace treaty probably the one -- to peace. my feeling is at some point, i almost think an american secretary of state or even a president should say, look. you have my number. 456-1414. if you got a serious plan, i'd like to help but i'm not going to put the united states once again in the middle of a deal where two folks think that god gave them the same piece of land. >> that is what is so fascinating. >> alex, we have a debate inside our country where george w. bush was going in in 2001, if they want peace, give me a call. i'll do whatever it takes. dr. brzezinski saying the past
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year there will be no peace unless the united states gets in the middle of it, grabs both sides and forces them to the table. >> but you look at the polling on it. two-thirds of the country thinks that peace process should be left to the guys involved in it which is israel and palestine. i think it's also worth noting, joe, this is the tenth anniversary of us deciding to go to war in iraq. it can't be underestimated. he does not want to get involved in another situation in the middle east that doesn't have clear end points and broad national support. >> joining us now live from jerusalem, nbc news host of "the daily rundown" chuck todd. chuck, what are you tell us? >> i want to try to do this in a way that will not drive joe crazy because of the satellite delay and talk over everybody. but just to pick up -- >> wait, wait, wait, chuck, hold on. >> please! >> we love this when we have the
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satellite delay. >> hey, joe! >> how are you doing? >> how are you? >> i did such a good job tossing! >> i thought mika did great there! >> she did. >> we get somebody overseas and i'll introduce them and they will stop and say, hey joe, how are you doing? i'll go up and get some coffee and come back and stir my drink and say, i'm fine. chuck, you do your job and you do it as well. take it away. >> to pick up on alex's point. yesterday in ramallah, palestinians were protesting the president's visiting that is taking place there in the west bank. this is the friendlier territory of the palestinians. this is abbas. this is not hamas, okay? he is getting protested there, the president is, and iraq was the reason among the things that they were yelling about was the iraq war. and protest the iraq war and they had president obama dressed
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in israel defense, fighter's uniform, idf uniform and looking like he was a member of the israel military. then you come on the israel side and he realize that 40% of those surveyed in the public opinion believe president obama is hostile. you have a situation the president is coming here right now, when it comes to the peace plan, and neither side seems to have trust in him in some form or another. that really is what the president is trying to fix by coming over here, which is sort of lowest common denominator stuff. improve his relationship with people on the ground because if that gets better, he can push things. bill clinton was enormously popular here and some palestinians and why he got so close. >> we will be following this as it develops. chuck todd, thank you very much. we are going to turn now to syria where both government and rebels are accusing each other
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of using chemical weapons. comes after deadly attacks where a news state agency reported 25 people were killed yesterday. an american official said they are looking into the allegations and white house president secretary jay carney issued a warn to the assad regime. >> we have no evidence to substantiate the charge that the opposition has used chemical weapons. we are deem skeptical of a regime that has lost all credibility and we would also warn the regime against making these kind of charges as any kind of pretext or cover for its use of chemical weapons. >> tom, obviously, alex brought it up. we just basically remembered the ten-year anniversary of a disastrous war in iraq and, yet, we see now in syria, 70,000 now killed. you've got democrats like dianne feinstein on the intel committee and mike rogers in the house on the intel committee talking about chemical weapons and other
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talking about red lines being crossed. are we moving towards a military intervention? >> i was watching earlier this morning and i saw senator graham saying we may have to commit american troops there. i hope that is not going to become the case. i think if this is an opportunity, obviously, for some kind of an ally effort and, by the way, why do we have the united nations if they can't act in the face of something like this? this is a great opportunity, it seems to me for the president and the president of russia, putin, to get together and say it's not an interest of either country for us to have this go on and not just the use of chemical weapons, but the spreading war fare and the utter chaos in the middle east, complete unsettling of that entire region in which borders don't mean anything any more. it's not about shiite and sunni and hezbollah. i think the real urgent issue i think they have to move forward because we are witness to a great tragedy in that part of
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the world. >> but, alex, it always turns back to the united states. afghanistan, after 9/11. iraq when, you know, a lot of our allies, other than french, the french were saying, got weapons of mass destruction we have to do about it now in syria. do we continue to exist in the middle of an international order where nothing is done unless it's kids from kansas and california and upstate new york and florida that do the fighting? >> yeah. i think this is one of those moments where, i think, you can almost sense the internal conflict in the white house giving the agagenocide. i don't know how the president will commit any troops given the state of affair of our troops when they return home, 600,000 veterans are stale waiting for their claims to send more boys and women, men and women over
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there. it would not seem to be any actual support for that. at the same time, how do you reconcile that with the blood shed? 70,000 people are dead. >> jeff? >> a few months ago, tony blair was speaking to it a group. i asked him yesterday q&a about iraq and the danger you think you know what is going to happen. you have outside view of what you can gop you're in a region a hundred years ago more or less winston churchill and few countries drew countries that didn't exist. he still has, i think, some feeling about what happened in iraq and his role. he said, that's right. if you stay out and do nothing, you have rwanda. everything that happens, everything that you look at with regret yields to another conclusion that may be the wrong one. munich told us to go into vietnam and that was a disaster and vietnam told us to stay out of places like rwanda and that didn't work out. rwanda may be telling us to go into syria where we could produce another disaster.
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i don't know what lessons there are here. god knows i'm no expert in that region. but when you watch -- when you watch great powers, the single overriding mistake they make is to think they know more than they know. >> yeah. >> another big story this morning. the nation's debate on gun reform where president obama's initiative to reduce violence in america has been severely weakened. democratic majority leader harry reid announced the most controversial and ambitious part of the president's proposal a ban on assault weapons will not make the final cut when he brings the bill up for a debate. >> but, right now, her amendment using the most optimistic numbers, has less than 40 votes. that's not 60. i have to get something on the floor so we can have votes on that issue and the other issues i talked about and what i'm going try to do. i'm not going to put something on the floor that won't succeed. i want something that will succeed. >> senator dianne feinstein, who sponsored the bill, was clearly
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irritated. the california democrat told reporters, quote, obviously, i'm disappointed. i tried my best, but my best i guess wasn't good enough. you'd think congress would listen, but they clearly listen to the national rifle association. the ban would have outlawed 160 semiautomatic weapons and limited the size of magazines to ten rounds. really? is it that hard? >> yes it is that hard. >> why is it that hard? because i was laughed at hysterically last hour when i talked about being in a roomful of 100 republicans. that image. >> we can't believe you said that. >> i asked this question, would it bother you if you couldn't have a bush master? anyone who disagrees with that we should get rid of at least those guns, it was unanimous. they are the ones voting for these people who are beholdent
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to the nra and clinging to the nra as if the nra holds the key to their political future. >> apart from the nra, a lot of passion in the west and where these votes are coming from and from the south about the right to hang on to their guns because they believe and too many of them believe this, that it's not overwhelming majority, they need their guns to hold off their government. . they really believe, i'm here to tell it you, mika, they really believe, someday, the government will come to their door to take away at gun point their guns and put them under their control and they want to think back. it's a whacko belief. >> we have drones now. i'm not coming to your door! >> but the. >> but what about universal background checks? there was a moment here we thought we would get sensible reforms and now it may be almost nothing. it's an open amendment process. you may have this strengthening gun rights as opposed to safety
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at the end of the day. >> there's a guy intimately involved in the middle of this and he still thinks perhaps optimistically that there is a chance they can get to the background check. what tom says, you know, is not only right, it's the nra. this may sound very strange to some people in this neighborhood. they are pressured by other gun groups that make the nra look moderate like the gun owners of america. what this negotiator said for a lot of these people background registration equals confiscation. he thinks, i'm skeptical about this, there is a chance that background checks are conceivable and he was predicting before this happened that the assault weapons ban was not going to happen. >> i've been involved in this from the very beginning looking at gun control and what the prospects were on "nightly news" and the "today" show.
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>> mike mccarthy is a congressman from napa valley. he called a town meetings in napa valley, of all places, in california, and had his head handed to him on the assault weapon ban. different when he got to san francisco. once you get out in the country, the whole gun and the right to possess them of any kind that you want is beyond our ability, very often, to understand. i've sat here before. i have a whole closet full of guns. i spend a lot of time in montana. i don't believe we should have assault weapons. i don't think there was any more persuasive argument for that than when stan mcchrystal was on this program and said they are only designed to kill people. >> you asked the question of general mcchrystal and other generals and they say the same thing. bottom line is where they are right now. jeff, i think you're right. where they are right now, they are talking about universal background checks and talking about really tough gun trafficking laws. >> right. >> the debate, right now, is do
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the universal background checks cover the friend-to-friend transfer? >> yes. >> and family to family. >> and family to family transfer. and if they do not, if it just closes a gun show loophole and closes the online loophole, there is a chance that the nra gives members a free pass and doesn't score it, and they will then get hammered like you said by gun owners of america. i tell you what, if you are a republican and you're voting against something that 92% of americans support, lots of luck. if you are a democrat, one of these 12 democratic senators, and you're going to vote against universal background checks that don't ban -- don't require background screening for individual-to-individual, familiar-to-family purchases, lots of luck explaining that on the campaign trail. have fun. i hope you and wayne la pierre enjoy your time outside of public service. coming up on "morning joe," two former governors, one republican and one democrat, are
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teaming up on immigration reform. haley barbour and ed rendell will join us straight ahead. up next former director of the congressional budget office is here with a market base plan for health care that is called the republican rebuttal to paul crudeman. douglas hotel-eakin will join us next. mallon brothers magic?
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♪ welcome back to "morning joe." taking a look at the u.s. capital. former director of the cbo and former adviser to the john mccain campaign and president of american action forum, douglas holtz eken. he says the senate budget is bad choice for america. at least they got a budget. give them credit. >> credit where credit is due. >> if four years we can at least start the debate. >> i think the biggest part. two now very different visions
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for the future and at least we know what the senate is going to put their votes behind. >> regular order. i salute the democrats for finally doing that. let's talk about long-term death -- debt. >> long-term death? good to be here! >> long-term death, as caine said in the end world any way. >> when we talk about long-term debt there is, of course, an ongoing debate certainly. i've had with pawl krugman. know you have as well that paul krugman says it doesn't matter. we have grown up hearing, believing, reading that whenever countries get to 90%, when their debt is 90% of gdp, it has an impact and when i was on charlie rose show debating paul krugman, charlie rose said it is bad for us when it gets over 90%, right? he said, oh, no, that's not a problem at all. who is right? >> you're right. this is not a matter who
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intellect is bigger or more powerful. you have to look at the historical record and countries that get too much debt grow more slowly than countries that look the same, otherwise, have the same approach and have less debt. >> what studies back that up? >> the famous book called "this time it's different." and the truth is we are not that new or different, that things the united states has done is in the midst of doing have been done before and they don't work out well. >> douglas, why can't we have simultaneously a robust debate on tax reform? that is sitting out there and no one is moving on it and everyone is very unhappy with the tax code as it currently exists and there are some opportunities there to pick up some additional revenue. but, at the same time, it would send a signal, i think, across the entire spectrum of the country maybe they can get something done. >> i agree with you. you're an experienced observer
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of these things. why can't we have this? the simpson-bowles system is hire tax reform and we are trapped. >> i don't know why the president just doesn't reach out and say we are having trouble with these other issues. this is one in which we can all gather at the same place and get something done. >> isn't the argument what to do about the -- that's where everyone sort of breaks. the president is saying, it's not -- some of it should be used to -- some of it should go back into the government and some of it could be used to lower tax rates. >> the president is not spending the good tax reform and debate is why. washington loves to talk about taxes. a long time now sideways spending is the problem and until we talk about spending it
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doesn't matter what revenue you get. got to fix the spending problem. >> nancy pelosi says we don't have a spending problem. actually, you've got -- hoyer saying we do. paul krugman you don't have to worry about medicare until 2025. this has bubbled up on the left the past three or four months. we call it debt deniers here. what is going on here? >> i've been saying the same thing for ten years. since i was at the cbo. the facts haven't changed. if you look at the numbers, you know, spending at rates you cannot tax your way out of and can't grow your way out of the only thing you can do is get your arms around those programs. what it's come down to is the recognition that we have to do something different in medicare. we have to do something digit in medicaid. fix the social security on its own merits and this is really a fight about how to save the social safety net. the sad part for me is there
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should be a fight about how to save it but there shouldn't be a fight whether to save it or not and what it's turned into. the deniers are stopping us from fixing programs that are good for americans. >> we see both sides are afraid to say what they would do. i guess bought of the political implications. having said that, we don't seem to be able to do anything preventive in this country. are we going to have to wait for a catastrophe in order to rectify this problem and what will that catastrophe fee? >> i think we have two catastrophic stories. one is broken politics a long time and the kind of performance in the recent years with the economy. everybody is frustrated. that is the good news scenario. the bad news scenario we literally fix it and we relive 2008. >> can i ask a question as
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conservatives especially focus on the issue of deficit and what we are going to do about it and it becomes a rallying cry. where was that rhetoric when we were involved in two wars and paying for them on a credit card and having two major tax cuts put in place? iraq war is one of the first wars we haven't had a war tax. where was that fiscal responsibility a decade ago? >> missing. and i'm the wrong person to ask this. because i said famously in budget circles. it's a big crowd. in three the party is over, people get it and not spend any more money and ten years later, i was dead wrong. we lost our rudder somewhere. that's something that america actually stuck to and lived by and served america well 200 years. since then we have developed big problems. >> i also illusion the war would
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pay for itself and be resolved within six months and up and running when everybody had been in baghdad and i had been there a lot of occasions knew how broken the country was. >> here is the key. we have seen debates before. any time someone uses that phrase pay for itself, write that down. not true! >> but give me your assessment of about what is going on with the dysfunction in washington on the fiscal and monetary matters and at the same time the american economy is lifting off. we seem to be on parallel tracks. the economy itself is it built on a solid foundation do you think or are people just investing because they don't have any other place to put their money at the moment? >> the u.s. is still the largest, strongest economy on the globe and lots of reasons to be optimistic and i fundamentally am. the economy is digging its way out of a very bad economy. the housing market we hope is recovering and better way to get better growth. the bad news is the fed is held
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hostage by a congress and administration that can't get anything done and it will continue to print money because it feels like it has to do something but it's not working very well. so really all roads lead to let's fix the debt and until we balance budgets, until we get serious about that, the fed is not able to fix it. >> douglas holtz-eakin, thank you very much. tom brokaw, thank you. alex, we will see you at noon. >> what is coming on at noon? >> doug is back! >> you just can't shake him! >> smart, smart, smart. thank you so much. on tomorrow's show, we have the secretary of health and human services kathleen sebelius with join us. coming up here on "morning joe," how do can you tell if a novel is worth reading when it gets a movie deal before it even hits the shelves. we will talk to best seller
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♪ welcome back to "morning joe." a look at the white house. >> beautiful day!
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>> yesterday, of course, we err talking about the ten-year anniversary of the iraq war and, of course, had those pictures and our staff lined up great shots of one democratic politician said at one point, saying saddam hussein had to be taken out and next step changing a year or two later when it became politically expedient to do that. >> we showed several xamps examf that. >> but several bad. a clip nancy pelosi didn't fit the story. here is a clip in better context. >> i applaud the president on focusing on this issue and taking the lead to disarm saddam hussein. from that perspective, though, of ten years on the intelligence committee, i rise in opposition to the resolution on national security grounds. the clear and present danger that our country faces is
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terrorism. i say, flat out, that unilaterally force and other remedies and making a case to the american people will be harmful to our war on terrorism. >> so nancy saluted the president for working to disarm saddam hussein but was clearly opposed to the war. in fact, seems like she got it just about right ten years later. >> said it would be a diversion from fight on terrorism. we apologize for that mistake. it was a piece. up next howard fineman and charles cooke will join us. keep it right here.
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look at that pretty shot of washington. >> gorgeous! >> here with us now is editorial director of huffington post media group howard fineman. hello. >> hi, mika. >> and also joining us is charles cooke. >> he isn't wearing a scarf. i'm a liverpool fan. what is up? >> you didn't tell me that until just now. >> what is going on? >> my -- >> no excuse to follow the empire. >> that is loyalty. >> what is your excuse for liverpool? >> i was born there. >> okay good. >> i'm making this stuff up. a long story get into it later. the republican party decides they are going to reboot and god knows if any party ever needed rebooting, our party did, but i don't know. i looked at the press conference and i read some of the documents and i'm left wondering whether these people get it.
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what was your take? >> i think all parties do this when they lose. >> right. >> it is, obviously, important to change. >> right. >> the democratic party has changed a little as well. but there is a risk of going overboard. you know, if you look back to 2004, the conventional wisdom was the democratic party had to become the republican party and the republican party now has an awful lot of people advising it telling it what to do who would like it become the democratic party because they are republicans. i think a grade to which the republican party to be careful not to move with the wind and lose its soul. having said, there are, obviously, issues and structural problems that young people don't like it. >> a bad sign! >> not a growth proposition. >> you know what else they did, mika? they got the biggest bus they could fine and drove it down the middle of the street. as the bus was passing, they
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pushed mike steele under it and he is with us now. >> are you okay? >> i find it interesting, michael. you were blamed despite the fact you were rnc chair when we made historic gains in 2010. what was your take on the do you mean? >> when i came in as national chairman on 2009 it was on the heels of having our clock cleaned in 2008 and having it cleaned again in 2006. i didn't need to spend $10 million to figure that out. the reality was what it was and you come in and you put the boots on the ground. you go out and you talk to people directly and you expose the party in way not traditional. i argued taking the party out of its comfort zone. a lot of members at the time thought it was a good idea but saw it required exposure on policy and exposure on principle and a lot of things the party didn't want to be exposed on. still a lot of things the party does not want to expose itself
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to. the words are nice. >> like what? >> the fact that you really going -- how does reince prieb it's reconcile his approach and his agreement with voter registration policies that many in the black community view as anti-black and racist? whatever the term happens to be. you got to reconcile how people feel about your policies not the fact you're going to show up. you can show up but it's what you say and do what you get there matters most to people. why in my first trip as national chairman up to here to harlem. 300 people showed up at town hall. the question was why are you going to harlem? that is where the votes, where the people are. >> exactly. howard fineman you had a horrible experience last night. you actually read the document. you said it reminded you of a term it paper that a student didn't want to write. >> they repeated the same nonstatements over and over
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again. >> what was the most telling nonstatement? >> the nonstatements were, first of all, they focused entirely on process in the driest aspect of the process. we need to be better data mining as if that would help. the data is clear. people under 30 overwhelmingly support the democratic party or overwhelmingly oppose this republican party. it was an exercise and not talking about what the real issue. the real issue is, as i see it, that the libertarian part of the conservative movement/republican party and the evangelical part of the conservative movement/republican party which were held together by ronald reagan and held together by fear of communism, are now at war with each other. the one honest paragraph in that whole report was the one in which they said that marriage equality is a gateway issue for young people and if we don't change on that issue, we're never going to get to young people at all.
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that was the one paragraph that actually was a strong statement. >> you know, it's so fascinating. you go back and read history. you've lived it. how old were you in 1964? >> 21. >> 21. you remember this very well. goldwater wins a historic landslide. >> loses a landslide. you said won. >> i mean lbj wins historic landslide. greatest landslide since '36 when fdr beat alf landon. boy, if you read pearlstein's books, the reviews were crushing. the republican party is dead and committed suicide and much worse than we were hearing here. two years later the republican party has the best off-year election and we march on to victory. >> because reality changes. a vietnam war going to bed and change people's minds.
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back in '89 republicans won five of the last six elections and electoral lock on the country. they have five six straight elections and south and west and democrats are done. then bill clinton shows up and, importantly, challenges his own party on stub substance, not process. he says we are brain dead. we have got to change on welfare and let people know we are tough on crime. he is a death penalty democrat. now people are saying the republican party is dead. >> but, charles, two years after bill clinton won said, we changed plolitic forever. my only point is i'm all for the hand wringing. nobody has been more critical of the republican party than myself, but sometimes it just comes down to blocking and tackling. getting the best quarterback and getting guys and women that know how to block and tackle. and this campaign was run horrifically the past year. >> if i can play devil's advocate for a moment.
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i think the gay marriage as a gateway may be arbitrary. if you look at the country. we have to be careful not to pretend that the white house is america. that's a general seat that we have because the president is so powerful and he is so visible. if you look at congress. the republicans did win congress again. the senate, the democrats have, but it's not a huge majority. and if you look at the states, the republican party is very healthy. also some of their issues have very popular. obama care is not still a popular law. >> what is the difference between on the state level republicans control 60% of the governor's houses. they have the majority of the state senators. they have the majority of the state legislatures. why a disconnect between the republicans on the state level and republicans in d.c.? charles and then howard. >> i think it's probably easier than more local you get to see the advocacy of a political program and it's very difficult for you to sell a program that we don't want to do this and we don't want to do that. i think it's probably a combination of it being easier
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to see. and there's a lot of money which comes from, you know, the federal government to people without it being of great cost to them or noticing it very much so it's easier to vote at the federal level, especially if you're not paying the taxes. we still don't have the taxes paying for the spending. you can't do that local. you can't borrow it. >> two quick things. yes, the presidency is somewhat different but this issue of marriage equality is moving so fast, the republicans have to get out of the way of it if not they will get run over by the younger generation. the other issue is at the it state level, republicans have to be pragmatic problem solvers. they can't take a philosophical distance against government because they have to run government. then the efficacy of being smart in a conservative way about using government can show results and it has shown results around the country and why republican governors are pretty popular. >> howard fineman and charles cooke, thank you very much. >> howard came with his louisville. >> university of louisville tie.
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>> coming up next is best seller harlan coppen who will join us. you're watching "morning joe," brewed by starbucks. [ female announcer ] how do you define your moment? the blissful pause just before that rich sweetness
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we have the best-selling author of more than 20 books, har lon coben. he brings props, greenfield.
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when do we get these? are you going to get this for the next book? >> in the classifieds. >> they put us in the classifieds. i guess it's who you know. chris christie just texted us. he said you played little league together. you were great friends. he said you're a great guy. hugh jackman, he's going to be -- hugh jackman. he starred in this movie before we even read the book. >> cool. yeah. >> tell me about it, man. >> actually, i met chris christie when i was 11 years old. his father coached our little league team. >> was he a good coach? >> his dad was unbelievable. calmest, nicest, sweetest man in the world. i don't know what happened to chris. the first day i came to a practice. i hadn't played for a team yet. chris comes over. he says chris christie. he starts introducing me around. >> and he ran for governor. >> he was that kind of a guy. >> you usually write thrillers. this is a thriller but a love story first. i sat in the back pew and watched the only woman i would ever love marry another man.
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>> i wanted to start with heartbreak. what is the worst situation can you imagine. and then all of a sudden, six years later, he has a chance to find her again. the husband is dead. >> she makes him make a promise to her. >> yes. >> promise me you won't find me, you won't look for me, you'll leave me alone. and at the last part of the pro log is i kept my promise for six years. six years, we skip ahead for six years. she finds and obituary for the husband. he goes to the funeral. he goes up and stands up and no one knows where she is. no one there knows him. no one knows her. and thus, we begin. >> wow. >> jeff greenfield? >> somebody who has written a novel and a half when you watch a master at work, apart from enormous envy at full page ads, i've actually talked to harlon about this. what is it apart from just -- the one thing i seem to remember, you know, you -- when
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you make a twist or awe make a turn, it has to be logical. you can't trick the reader. if the reader were reading carefully, he or she would know, understand where it's coming from. but the constant is your expectations keep getting flipped right through to the end. and all i can do is, you know, admire it and have enormous pangs of jealousy. >> wow. >> he's been a reader of mine for a long time. i'm really flattered. but, yeah, you always love to try to do that. i want to play with perception. i want to lead you down one way and turn it in an emotional way that is going to also move you. >> but you leave clues along the way. >> there are plenty of clues. at the end of the book very last twist and will change the way you look at the whole book. >> how is this different from the others that you've done? do you feel this one is sort of a stand alone property by itself? i mean you have the hugh jackman thing and that's great. but as a novel, how is this one different for you? >> i think it may be the most suspenseful. i think it's the only one i've ever done that is first person all the way through.
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you're as confused as this guy. there is my 24th novel. this is probably the most suspenseful. you read almost all of them. how do you rank it? you rank it better than i can. >> not the old ones. he said he's at the top of his game. and it's such -- such a pinnacle in his career that even before the book is out they're doing a movie. and actors are lining up, begging you. they're knocking on your door saying can i play the lead role? and hugh jackman has the lead role. it came out yesterday. >> i wanted someone good looking and talented but only -- we settled for hugh jackman. >> you could have called me, you know. >> that's right. if you and hugh were on the same time, we're going to keep mixing you two up. you have the same look. >> one of the neat things, when you do a series, in a way you're ahead of the game because the reader if it's a reader who knows okay there is myron, there is the office manager whatever she is, there is the parents.
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and in a way i would think that is kind of easier. you have a structure already. readers know it. this is a stand alone book. you have to win us over by really caring about this lead character. >> i've never seen it before or read it before. >> harlon this is great stuff, man. >> thanks, guys. i look forward to reading it. the new book is "six years" coming to a movie theater near you. thank you, harlon. coming up, much more on "morning joe." we're talking about the president in israel, chemical warfare possibly in syria and stars diving off of diving boards. omnipotent of opportunity. you know how to mix business... with business. and you...rent from national. because only national lets you choose any car in the aisle. and go. you can even take a full-size or above. and still pay the mid-size price. i could get used to this.
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good morning, it's 8:00 on the east coast, 5:00 a.m. on the west coast. time to wake up. >> no, no, no. stay in bed. you have a couple more hours. >> don't be lazy. >> your boss doesn't need you this morning. >> just get up. you'll get so much done. if you listen to joe, you'll be behind the eight ball all day long. take a live look at new york city. on set we have michael steel, michael wolf, and in washington, former congresswoman jane h harmon. let's get to the news. the conflict in syria is reaching a critical stage. the government is claiming the rebels are using chemical weapons. the syrian state news agency reports at least 25 people were killed yesterday. american officials say their looking into the allegations and
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white house press secretary jay carney issued a warning to the assad regime. >> we have no evidence to substantiate the charge that the opposition is using chemical weapons. we're debately skeptical a regime that lost all credibility and warn the regime against making the charges as any kind of pretext or cover for its use of chemical weapons. >> neither side of the conflict has provided documentation that chemical agents have been used. senator lindsey gram spoke about the allegations telling foreign policy's the cable this, we need to come up with a plan to secure these weapons sites either in conjunction with our partners or if nothing else, by ourselves. if the choice is to send in troops to secure the weapons sites versus allowing chemical weapons to get in the hands of the most violent people in the world, i vote to cut this off before it becomes a problem. but following intelligence briefings, the chairs in the
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house and senate intelligence committees said that they believe president assad crossed the so-called red line in the civil war. >> wow. >> i think the days are becoming more desperate. the regime is more desperate. we know where the chemical weapons are. it's not a secret that they're there. and i think the probabilities are very high that we're going to some very dark times. i think the white house needs to be prepared. >> i have a high probability to believe that chemical weapons were used. we need that final verification but given everything we know over the last year and a half, i, mike rogers, would come to the conclusion that they are either positioned for use and ready to do that or in fact have been used. both of those scenarios, i think, we need to step up in the world community to prevent a
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humanitarian disaster that we haven't seen since 25 years ago in iraq. >> the world health organization which is sending medical supplies to syria are not verifying that patients were seeking treatment for chemical weapons. 70,000 syrians have been killed since fighting began nearly two years ago. more than 800,000 people have fled to jordan and lebanon. >> jane har mmon, the situation keeps getting worse by the day. the democratic intelligence person of the senate, the republican chairman of the house intelligence committee talking about this red line being crossed. i remember having debate a couple months ago about 20,000 syrians being killed, how long do we stand on the sidelines? we're up to 70,000 right now. how much longer does this go on before the united states and the allies through the united nations get involved and take this tyrant out of power? >> well, right.
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i was there, joe, ten years ago when i believe bad wmd intelligence on iraq. so i'm reluctant to say something i don't know. and i don't know on the chemical stockpiles whether they are ready for use or have been used. i don't think we absolutely know. i just did hear that the clip of mike rogers. but i do agree that we've reached a tipping point. and that we have to play a more forceful role. $60 million of humanitarian relief is not enough. the allies are ready to help arm the opposition. the opposition has named a leadership team which is important. the leader is an american syrian who at least sounds competent. i have no idea. but having just been in israel and in europe, i think that we ought to consider as part of a group moving against the air assets in syria and surely doing more to secure the chemical stockpiles right now.
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>> certainly would be good to act as a group which is something the president has done before. but dan, the decisions are so difficult because there is a reticence to jump too far into anything at this point given the engagements that we have at hand. >> sure. to be clear, there are action that's can be taken short of direct u.s. intervention, supplying the opposition, arms and defense capabilities. >> right. >> there is a emerging bipartisan coalition in congress pushing for that now. you look at what senator carl levin has said specifically on that issue now, basically coming out for it a couple days an ago. senators have introduced legislation to provide more support for the syrians. i think will is similar action bipartisan in the house foreign affairs committee. so i think the combination of the human catastrophe illustrated by the statistics that joe cited which in addition to the death toll, two million
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people internally displaced in syria, so the place is a powder cake. and then you add this development, i think it gets to the point where the question is engage some way and providing resources is risky but riskier than where this is heading? >> going into iraq for all the reasons a decade ago, our policy leaders remembering that. but are we like generals fighting the last war who have the human catastrophe in front of us? 70,000 killed. so many displaced. how long do we stand by? >> we don't mind sitting out other humanitarian catastrophes. since 1998 in eastern congo, most international humanitarian groups think there have been millions of people killed. >> right. >> we are looking at this for different reasons so let's not full o fool ourselves. >> so help me out here.
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i asked this question and there seems to be an uneven answer every time we start talking about humanitarian tragedies. i remember bill clinton wringing his hands because of rwanda, the million people killed if rwanda. >> right. >> then two million were killed in sudan. and we stood by and did nothing. but we had to send troops to bosnia because of a humanitarian crisis, that's what we were told. then we had to send troops to kosovo because of the humanitarian crisis despite the fact fewer people were killed in either of those conflicts than rwanda -- >> right. if we're saying this is a strategic question, syria is important to us because of the strategic play in this region. then what the white house doing isn't immoral, it's just in the long tradition of american foreign policy which is to say syria is important because of israel. it's important because of iran. but at the same time, we're trying to deal with iran directly and one of the other lessons from iraq is if you
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think there's a threat in the region among muslims, among arabs, then you should deal with that threat. if you want to go after al qaeda, go after al qaeda. don't go after something peripheral. so the strategic question for this administration has always been is syria so well armed that nothing short of full blown war, you can have some air strikes. but to take down the syrian air defenses is full blown war. the real tipping point is what the syrian army has been degraded to the point they can do that. >> we have a lot of other news to cover. the first like of mark sanford's shot at political redem sgs now complete. the former governor of south carolina easily clinched a spot in a runoff for the charleston area congressional seat. what is still unclear is who his opponent will be. following thin voter turnout, a recount begins on friday between curtis bostic and larry grooms when were separated by less than 1%. sanford will try to get together support for those who voted for
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other candidates in what was a pack ld field. flanked by his sons, sanford invoked the importance of putting the country's financial house in order. >> at the end of the day what we're all fighting for as fellow south carolinians and fellow americans is this larger notion that doing something on the tipping point that our civilization now finds itself. wherein we have 40 cents of every dollar barred to sustain government. we have a fed that buys 7 a% of what the treasury spends every year. where we have a congressional budget office that says in just 12 years we will only have enough to pay for interest and entitlement and nothing else. >> the winner will meet democrat elizabeth colbert-bush in may's general election. >> she is a very different side of the family. it's like missouri and missouri.
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half of them pronounce it one way. half of them pronounce it the other way. >> it's an interesting race, for sure. >> you see michael steel and mark sanford talk and that's how the guy always talked. >> always talked. >> just like that. and i remember after his crisis happened, we were down in south carolina. i invited him to lunch and sat and talked and he said how stupid he was and how sorry he was. we talked about the personal side of everything. and then i asked him about the politics. and i said you think you'll ever get in? he said i don't know. this was a couple years ago. he said all i know is, i'm such an idiot. he said this is our time talking about me and him. these are the things we've talked about for 20 years, joe. nonstop. he's back and he's talking about these issues that everybody else is talking about. >> redemption is a beautiful thing. >> and if he continues and wins this, he's going to actually be
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a very strong voice in washington. >> i think he will be a strong voice. and the interesting thing is about american politics is voters are very forgiving lot. at the end of the day, the people of south carolina in his district are going to look at him and measure him against his past, for sure, but also in the context of this time and the issues that are going to be important to discuss. and he has taken the appropriate amount of time away from it all to heal himself, to heal his family and to move on. and i think the voters appreciate that. it is clear from the numbers he got in that field. it was a crowded field. and he could have easily gotten swamped. >> all right. let's get to one more story on the nation's debate on gun reform. president obama's initiative to reduce violence in america has been severely weakened. democratic majority leader harry reid announced the most controversial and ambitious part of the president's proposal, a ban on assault weapons will not make the final cut when he brings the bill up for debate.
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>> but right now her amendment using the most optimistic numbers has less than 40 votes. that's not 60. i have to get something on the floor so we can have votes on that issue and the other issues that i've talked b and that's what i'm going to try to do. i'm not going to try to put something on the floor that won't succeed. i want something that will succeed. >> senator dianne feinstein who sponsored the ban was clearly irritated. the california democrat told reporters, obviously i'm disappointed but i guess my best wasn't good enough. you'd think congress would listen but they clearly listen to the national rifle association. and they do. the ban would have outlawed it nearly 160 semiautomatic weapons and limited the size of magazines to ten rounds. and in today's daily news, mike lupicca writes a scathing op-ed on the removal of the assault weapon ban saying "any fool knows that lieian lanza couldn't
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possibly have killed as many children as quickly as he did on the morning of december 14th without an assault weapon in his hands so how does the president and any other politician from who allows the gun nuts from the national rifle association win again? answer the larger question about weapons that made killings like the elementary school massacre ridiculously easy if not now for a ban on these weapons, when? if sandy hook elementary doesn't make every member of congress take a stand against assault weapons in this country, then what does? this moment, the moment of newtown, of sandy hook, elementary, should not be lost because if it is, maybe it's lost forever. it was officially lost in washington on tuesday, lost to fear and lost to ignorance and lost to the nra. one last time if not a ban on assault weapons now, then when? shame on them all." i will tell you, i was in a room full of republicans, all of them, hundreds of them recently and i -- >> wow.
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that image -- wow. >> we do that more often than you think. i got hives but it's okay. >> it's probably her accountants that count her money. >> that's right. >> lawyers. >> you have to get them stacked up. >> actually, no. no, they were not. they were just regular people. and they were in the south. >> regular old republicans. and i asked the question, i said do any of you feel impeded? i said all of the republicans, please tell me. and i said seriously. would you have a problem with a ban on these types of guns? and all of them, unequivocally said no. so i don't know who these people are in washington who feel the need. >> about 1% of americans. >> to cling to their survivalist groups. >> it's all weapons. >> coming up, he's the director behind some of the funniest comedies of all time including seinfeld, "curve your enthusiasm" and "friends," comedian david steinberg joins us next and up next, haley
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barbour and ed rendell. they'll join us next on "morning joe." first, here's bill karins with a check on the forecast. bill? >> good happy spring to you. we've officially headed into the beginning of our sprung season. unfortunately, it still feels like the middle of winter out there in so many spots. the weather map doesn't look fun or springlike. winter weather dominates with a cold blast in the northern plains. still snow showers in the great lakes. and rainy weather in the northwest. the wind chills this morning have been brutal. minneapolis has minus 11 wind chills. i mean we're getting towards the end of march. chicago, 1. kansas city, 9. denver, 8. a lot of cold air up there. that means we still have a chance of getting more snow in the days ahead. i want to throw fargo in there. you're one of the lowest i've seen, minus 18 as you step out the door. a lot of rain on the west coast, too. i-5 from seattle all the way southward to aberdeen and long
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view and portland, you have rain and windy conditions. we're even seeing rain showers to the south, soo, around sacramento and san francisco. so your forecast for your wednesday, the frigid start to spring in the midwest. high temperatures, not even getting up into the upper 20s. we're only calling for a high of 24 today in chicago. 71 in dallas is more like it. we're okay in the southeast. just a few thunderstorms down there in the sunshine state. so at least we have sunshine after a chilly start. d.c., we're not really looking at anything too bad in the near future. still all eyes on what is going to happen as we go from sunday to mondayment we'll have more on that as the week progresses. [ male announcer ] when it comes to the financial obstacles military families face, we understand. our financial advice is geared specifically to current and former military members and their families. life brings obstacles. usaa brings retirement advice.
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earning loads of points. we'll leave that there. you got a weather balloon, with points? yes i did. [ man ] points i could use for just about anything. go. ♪ keep on going in this direction. take this bridge over here. there it is! [ man ] so i used mine to get a whole new perspective. [ laughter ] [ male announcer ] earn points with the citi thankyou card and redeem them for just about anything. visit citi.com/thankyoucards to apply. mr. wiggles and curling irons. for the little mishaps you feel, use neosporin to help you heal. it kills germs so you heal four days faster neosporin. also try neosporin eczema essentials.
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i think the conversation needs to start by acknowledging that we aren't going to deport 12 million illegal immigrants. if you wish to work, if you wish to live and work in america, then we will find a place for you. >> welcome back to "morning joe," rand paul talking about immigration reform yesterday. things are definitely shifting on that topic inside the republican party. we're a long way from 2006. with us now from capitol hill, former goner of pennsylvania, nbc news political analyst and he still has that sports column, ed? >> yeah, i sure do, joe. i love it. >> the most important thing is he's a sportswriter as well. he has a weekly column in philadelphia. also we have the former governor of mississippi, haley barbour. and also both of these former
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governors are co-chairs of the policy immigration task force. and we're going to be talking to them obviously about immigration reform. and also we have nbc latino contributor victoria defrancesco soto. very kind of you. look at this. >> promise me when ut football is up, you drink out of it. >> i'm going to get awfully thirsty over the next couple years with johnny football at a & m. you also get a mug for mika. we greatly appreciate it. hey, guys, let's start with you. what's the bipartisan pathway to real immigration reform? >> well, i think to see rand paul makes the point. we're not going to take 12 million people, 11 million people, whatever the number is, and we're not going to arrest them and incarcerate them and deport them. we're simply not going to do that.
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for me, joe, what i most focused on is that our economy needs these workers. america is in a global battle for capital and labor. and we need the labor. we need the labor at the high end. >> let me ask you. you know what the critics say? we have high unemployment rate. why can't americans do these jobs? >> well, look at my state. i'm your neighbor. and my state our biggest agriculture product is broilers, chickens. if you go to a chicken processing plant in mississippi, nobody in there speaks english. mississippians, alabamians, north carolinians, they don't want to take those jobs. texans don't want to take those jobs. we need the labor. we also need -- there's a lot of high, high end science technology engineering math talent in this country, students who come from overseas. we need them to stay here because they'll create jobs in
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the united states. right, ed? >> so, ed, what is the deal? how do we get to a comprehensive immigration reform package that both sides can agree on? >> well, you know, joe, it's very similar to the discussions we've been having about the debt. both sides are going to have to give a little. there's not going to be a bill with democrats will not vote for a bill without a real path way to citizenship. and that's to some people in the republican party that's -- they consider that amnesty. it has to be in the bill. and for our side, we have to understand that stepped up enforcement at the border, verify for businesses, that has to be part of the bill or else republicans won't vote for it. each side has to give a little. if they do. this is easier to achieve than obviously the debt is. and maybe this can be a precursor to working something out on the debt. we need something in washington, d. d.c., joe, you talked about it, both sides agree we do something in a bipartisan fashion. we show we can tackle a big
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issue. if we do that, the rest may fall into place. >> victoria is right there is a battle going on in the republican party. you have marco rubio talking about a pathway to citizenship. jeb bush has written a book where he talks about a pathway to legalization. but not citizenship. there is a pathway to legalization enough, do you think, for democrats? is that enough for latinos that want immigration reform? >> i think the sticking point is going to be a pathway to citizenship. but the positive -- >> so legalization probably would not go for enough? >> it's not. and the democrats, especially in the senate, have drawn a line in the sand and said this is what we want. we want citizenship. rand paul has not said i support a pathway to legalization, but he has -- i'm sorry, a pathway to citizenship, but he suggested as much and so has jeb bush. in the past he's come out in favor of citizenship. the thing that really worries me and i think is going to be a sticking point is e-verify
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though. >> you have a question? >> i do. i have a question for you. this is michael steel. how you are doing, governor? >> hi, michael. how are you doing? >> good. in our republican primary, rick perry said basically what you heard rand paul say in the beginning of this segment about we're not -- re-emphasizing, we're not deporting these individuals and he was booed off the stage during that primary debate. how do you see this issue changing within the party as we've just talked about, jeb bush, rick santorum, marco rubio and others beginning to enunciate a policy or review. how do you, governor, see this transforming inside the party with the base, not the intelligence, not the establishment. we know where they want to go with this. how do we move the base to come along into this argument in a profound way that actually gets us on the right side of the issue? >> michael, i think there are
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some people that you're never going to satisfy, just like any other issue. i made a speech in january of 2011 about this subject and about the need for labor and how we need to have immigration reform. ed has made a point that i think is very important, not everybody's going to get everything they want. in fact, probably nobody will get everything they want. but we've got a serious issue if we're going to grow this economy, we've got to increase the size of our workforce. we have one of the smallest percentages of people in the united states working or looking for work than we've had in 40 years in the united states. we need the labor. it's a top end, also in agriculture and different businesses like that. so everybody's got to have to be bipartisan. everybody's got to work on it together. and you're right, people are not just going to flock to this. i remember i was in the white house with president reagan, the last immigration reform bill
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1986. it took a full two years, while there are encouraging signs right now like rand paul and marco rubio and jeb bush and others, this is not going to happen overnight. we've all got to work hard on this. >> building on that, governor rendell, putting aside your relationship with haley barbour right next you to, the sincerity of the republican effort here, what is your sense of it? how much is just they want to get the votes they didn't get and how much is it they really think that they need to make progress on this issue? >> well, i think there is a little of both. one of the points i think that needs to be made, at the national level, these would-be presidential candidates, they can read the tea leaves and they saw what happened in the last election with the hispanic vote. individual congressmen in their district, there may not be the same push for a pathway to citizenship as there is nationwide because in many of the districts there isn't a strong latino presence. so you've got to convince some of those, you're right, you're not going to get all of them. this is not going to be a
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unanimous vote. but you have to persuade some of them to go along with this. i think there are enough to do it. i think this bill, if it has a pathway to citizenship, the numbers may add up a little bit like the fiscal cliff bill with about maybe 40% of the republicans voting for it and most of the democrats voting for it.got to be stuff in it that the republicans can take back to their base like border security and e-verify. what are the objections to e-veri e-verify? >> victoria, obviously timing is very important. the support may not come out until the end of the year. we always have august recess. that's when health care took a thrashing. how important is it for congress to move as quickly as possible on immigration bill? >> timing is everything. if we don't see immigration bill or at least the strong bones of an immigration bill before recess, i really do think we're going to devolve into health care town hall that we had in 2009.
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and we already saw a snipit of it in arizona when john mccain went back home a couple weeks ago, all hell broke loose at his town hall. i do agree with governor rendell that biggest roadblock is going to be the house and members of congress. we really haven't seen anybody from the republican side come out strongly for a pathway to citizenship. ryan is flirting with it. but aside from rand paul and marco rubio, where are those voices in the house? if anything we're going to see very strong opposition from the republican party and if anything a latino is leading that charge. >> you know, joe, victoria you can take this. at cnbc we look at the business side of it. i want to ask more wholistic question, why are people so scared of this, a pathway to citizenship? what is the fear? >> 1986. the failure of 1986. >> border security is part of the deal in 1986 or at least not executed on. and so the fear is, i know a
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lot -- among a lot of rank and file republicans and joe you know this and heard this, that we have a repeat of '86. okay, fine, we give full amnesty to the 11 million, 12 million people and there is no check on border security. and then ten years, 20 years from now we have another 15, 20 million illegal -- >> all reagan's amnesty bill is encourage more illegal immigrants to jump the fence and come over here. that is a real concern as alex said in my ear, it was 1986, what did that lead to? the mets winning the world series. >> i was going to say that. >> we knew that was going to happen. no! can't happen. so let's talk -- let's talk about '86 and also talk about the political realities of congressman going back to mississippi on a long, hot, august recess talking about a pathway to citizenship. how hard is that? >> first of all, i would say about '86, if you ask alex
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simpson, the lead sponsor, what failed about '86, he'll tell that you we didn't keep the first promise we made and that was let's do this bill and we'll secure the border. and we didn't secure the border. and so it's all right and proper that that be the first thing. >> and that's in the gang of eight proposal. no one gets a green card until the border is secure under the criteria that they put in. >> and as a state that has e-verify, we found it works very well. it's not unpopular among hispanic community. and it does protect employers. if you're going to have a system that punishes employers for hiring illegals, you got to have a system where if they make an honest effort not to that they're protected. e-verify, which i had some doubts about just to be honest with you when we first adopted it in my state, is actually doing well. it's not perfect. but it's worked well. >> all right.
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all right. thanks a lot haley barbour. we greatly appreciate it. ed, thank you as well. victoria, we appreciate you coming by even with the texas mugs. >> even with? >> okay. when they start winning again, we'll start using them. >> just wait until august. >> i've been drinking out of my ole miss tumbler for haley over the past year or so and shactman, we can only hope. >> i have two of those in my house. >> 1986 as a red sox fan going back to '75. my low point, man. '86 was ugly. >> angels was high and then the mets was low. we lost against the reds. you can't complain for another decade. >> whatever. i can always complain. coming up, leave it to reality tv to turn a graceful olympic sport into a floating train wreck. we're going to explain this one when we come back and shactman watched the whole thing.
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we shall return on "morning joe."
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wow. >> kareem abdul-jabbar taking part in a new reality show. >> you watched this last night? >> joe, i watched five minutes of it. >> what is wrong with you? >> i was in a hotel. there was nothing on tv. i saw it. >> other than that, there was stuff on tv. >> now what hooked you? oh, never mind. i just saw the -- i just saw the -- >> you want to see sexy? >> of course. you have louie anderson in a bathing suit. >> take a look.
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>> my point is, i said this to you earlier, that's a dive. that is not a belly flop. he went in like that. >> look at that. >> yeah. >> how would you do on that one? would you do an inside back flip? >> i wouldn't do that. because i just wouldn't do it. >> we'll see where we all are in 20 years and how badly we want to be on tv. >> i won't be on the diving board, my man, i promise you that. coming up next, inside comedy, the very funny david steinberg joins us to review the new season of the show time hit. we're here! we're going to the park! [ gina ] oh hey, dan!
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i had the nagging thing of wanting to try comedy. so i did try standup. >> do you remember anything that you did? anything? >> yeah. i had -- >> try it on me. >> i'm will farrell and a lot of people don't know this but i was the original vocalist for the theme to star trek. and if you will indulge me, i'd love to sing it for you. okay. ♪ >> so he just sang the whole thing for you. all right. that was a clip from show time's inside comedy entering the second season. back on "morning joe" is the
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show's host and co-executive producer legendary comedian and director david steinberg. david, you wake up -- you wake up and watch "morning joe." >> i tevo "morning joe," i watch it every day. i like the looseness of it. i like the way it goes. i lot of clip they showed. you sort of see the difference between edward r. morrow and me. >> okay, you know a lot of people confuse the two of you. thank god it's directed in such a way. for people that didn't watch the last time you were on, you are obviously a great comedian yourself and also a director and have been through the years for curve, one of our favorites, "seinfeld" through the years. let me ask you. what do you enjoy more? >> well, you know, i -- i'm only in comedy all the time. >> right. >> and that's an enjoyable thing to do. because you're dealing with
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humor, you're dealing with laughter. so directing is like that. so it's great fun, you know? i boss larry david around. he does everything i say. >> i hear that's the case. when is the next "curb" season coming? i don't know. whenever he calls me up and says okay. he kind of goes at his own pace. >> i can review some shows have been written already. but that doesn't mean anything. >> it doesn't mean anything. this has got to be really a lot fun for you to now be able to talk to people like will farrell and actually talk about your craft and what you've grown up doing. it's just great artists getting together and you get a chance to just talk to them about something you love. >> yes. i must say, i love the show. i love -- it's a labor of love for me. even the comedians are not sort
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of switched on like you have to be in front of an audience. and in so many ways i'm connected to so many of them, not just by forecast, just becau -- by craft, because i know everybody. >> your comedians can be the worst interview. you talk to a guy that is the funniest guy on stage. and it comes from a source of pain. and now we don't want to hear that. make us laugh. but you get past that because you know so many of these people. >> yeah. and a comedian talking to another comedian, dhoent want to just be serious. and i'm not interested in -- i'm not interested in anything serious about their lives. i'm interested in how they got there, what they feel about it now, what did they see as a kid that made them want to be a keidane? >> so you have seen a lot. you heard a lot. you obviously honed your own craft through the years. i always love when you have guitarists getting together and interviews and first time eddie
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van halen and clapton and the other guitarist said, wow. what's been a revelation for you in this showtime series where you asked a question and you came back and said, that's pretty good approach. >> i'll tell you what the overall philosophical revelation is that i used to think that if you had a good childhood, a very happy marriage, little money in the bank you'd make a lousy comedian. >> that's a disaster, right. >> this is not a field -- >> you have to be poor and tortured. bipolar disorder helps. >> any dysfunction helps comedy. but it's different than it was a few years ago, let's say 30, 40 years ago when the sort of immigrant comedians were struggling and all that. people are more stable now.
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and comedy, when i started out was still, you know, if you were dating someone, when i was single i started doing my second city in comedy and that woman would say to her mother i'm dating a comedian. she would say, please, not a comedian. anything but. >> but now comedy has gone corporate. and since "seinfeld," you know, you can't, you know, swing a cat without someone saying oh, my kids had his bar mitzvah and he's a good comedian. will you help him get on "curb" or something like that? >> and suddenly comedians, you talk about a cheomedians, will farrell, a middle class frat y guy. >> you have a one man show
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coming up. >> how do you see -- when you look at that, having done this and everything elimination you've doelse on stage and going on your own without the comfort of having play-off hopes? >> well, being on stage by yourself doing comedy is still one of the hardest things that you do because you cannot succeed just by writing something and doing it. you have to fail in front of an audience. it's a stupid thing to have an audience pay to see you fail. but as a comedian, you will never get it right unless you do it over and over and over again. i really honestly thought this is the dumbest idea that i've had. o i'm a director. i don't need to do this. why put myself through it? i'm a canadian. they were doing a documentary on
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me. and they interviewed larry david and said he doesn't want our friends to talk about him. larry david said put him on stage. that's what we all want. and i thought, you know, a documentary made me do it and i did it. and to my surprise, it went great. the documentary is coming out now. it's in the toronto film festival. >> wow. >> i had nothing to do with the documentary. i'm used being the director in charge of everything. >> right. >> so they said it's finished. it wasn't bad. and they said we need a title immediately. so they said so the title we've come up with is "expect the worst." i said that's the title of my documentary? why expect the worst? and they said well, you said at what point before you gone ott stage you expect the worst but hope for the best. i said then put hope for the
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best but'expect t not expect th. >> let's test market that. i want to see that. >> the title became "quality balls" because that's what seinfeld to me. you have quality balls. >> okay! that's the title. >> that's better! david steinberg, thank you so much. [ female announcer ] new york strips. sudden trips. mr. wiggles and curling irons. for the little mishaps you feel, use neosporin to help you heal. it kills germs so you heal four days faster neosporin. also try neosporin eczema essentials.
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tomorrow morning, kathleen sebelius joins us right here with her standup routine. up next, what, if anything, did we learn today? here's a look at your business travel forecast on this first day of spring. it is a frigid start to spring in the midwest. wind chills are the negative numbers through much areas of minnesota, wisconsin, and iowa. high temperatures today struggling even with some sunshine to get up near 20 to 25 degrees. i mean that's crazy for this time of year. well below average. we're not looking at a lot of travel trouble. one. you know how to dance... with a deadline. and you...rent from national. because only national lets you choose any car in the aisle... and go.
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